Capital News Service, Jan. 30, 2011
RICHMOND – A Senate panel is considering a House-approved bill to eliminate the requirement that girls in Virginia receive the vaccine against the human papillomavirus before entering sixth grade.
Delegate Kathy Byron, R-Lynchburg said she proposed HB 1419 to return medical decisions to families. She said households should determine what vaccines to give children.
The HPV vaccine, called GARDASIL, was approved in 2006 by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to prevent cervical cancer in females. Last year, the FDA approved the vaccine to guard against genital warts in males.
The vaccine, which requires three doses, was found to be most successful against cervical cancer when given to girls at a young age.
Virginia is the only state with a law requiring girls to get the HPV vaccine.
Byron said the 2007 law requiring girls to get the HPV vaccine was spurred by an intense lobbying campaign by Merck & Co., the manufacturer of GARDASIL.